JBugs Video Series

1971 VW Super Beetle - Front Suspension Removal:

Video Overview:

The body is off our 1971 Super Beetle which leaves behind a chassis which isn’t as easy to manage as a Standard Beetle. The front suspension on a Super Beetle depends on the body and with it gone the front wheels have nothing to hold them in place. We threw together a temporary framework but we want all the front suspension components out of the way when we get to working on the rust repairs. So we’re going to pull all the front suspension and we threw together a simple bolt on rolling dolly which will make working on our car easier.

Vehicle Prep: 0:48
Tie rod assembly removal: 1:18
Strut and spindle assembly removal: 1:40
Control arm removal: 2:21
Sway bar removal: 2:55
Crumple guard removal: 3:13

Video Tips:

Tools used in this video:

Jack Stands
Wheel Chocks
Impact Driver
3/8" Bit Adapter
3/8" Drive 6" Extension
3/8" Drive 13mm Socket
3/8" Drive 14mm Socket
1/2" Impact Driver
1/2" Drive Ratchet
1/2" Drive 17mm Socket
1/2" Drive 19mm Socket
Sledge Hammer
13mm Wrench
17mm Wrench

Video Transcript:

Hello! I'm Sam with JBugs.com
We finally have our body pulled off our chassis of our 1971 Super Beetle 
and because the front suspension of the super beetle ties to the body, once it's gone there's nothing to hold the front wheels in place.
We rigged up a temporary framework to allow us to roll the chassis around without the body for a few days 
but since we'll be putting the body on and pulling it off numerous times while doing rust repairs we want to get all of the front suspension out of the way. 
We do still want to be able to roll the pan around 
so we welded up some legs to the front of the tow bar mount that was on our car and we bolted on some castors. 
We bolt the mount back to the chassis and remove the front wheels. 
The left and right tie rod ends are loosened. We use a jack to lift the spindle up, using the tie rod end as the jack point. 
Hitting the spindle a few times with a sledgehammer pops the tie rod free so we can remove it from the spindle. 
The same process is done on the opposite side 
and with both ends free the tie rod assembly can be set aside.
We disconnect our right brake line, which was only loosely reattached to keep the lines clean, 
and jack up the front end so we can remove the lower ball joint nut. The jack is moved to the bottom of the ball joint and jacked up. Then, we use a sledgehammer again to hit the control arm to pop the ball joint loose. Once it's free, we lower the jack. We remove the strut and spindle assembly from our metal framework and set it aside. 
The same process is done on the left side 
and once both strut assemblies are removed, we remove the temporary framework.
We continue the tear-down by removing the cotter pin at the left end of the sway bar where it attaches to the control arm. 
The nut is removed so the outer washer can be pulled off 
but it's threaded back in place and tapped to break the control arm loose. The inner eccentric bolt for the control arm is removed. 
The control arm is tapped free from the chassis 
and removed from the sway bar.
The process is the same for the right side and once both control arms are removed, 
the front end is jacked up so we can pull off the tow bar mount temporarily and remove the sway bar. 
The left and right sway bar brackets are removed from the chassis 
so the sway bar can be dropped down. The brackets are bolted back into the chassis for safekeeping.
While we're here, we remove the two remaining bolts for the front chassis crumple guard 
from the bottom side where it attaches to the front of the tunnel. The guard is removed. The tow bar mount is bolted back to the chassis, now with loose nuts to hold the bolts in place. 
We can now lower the chassis back down to the ground and get to work tearing down the pan a bit more 
before we move the pan and body over to a shop where we can begin cutting and welding.
Thanks for watching!
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